While adults know that most children will be teased for something at some point, and pay the problem no mind, teasing can be devastating to a child. Cruel nicknames such as “baby diapers” or worse can stick to a child and bring on the feelings of shame, anger, embarrassment, and worthlessness mentioned above, and this can be quite serious.
When your child thinks, “I’m being teased.”
Have grown-ups talk to your child about what they were teased as a child (all the better if they were teased about bedwetting, too) and have them tell your child how the problem eventually got better.
Also, you may want to suggest to your child some things he or she can say when he or she is being teased. The best way to do this (especially with younger children) is to play make-believe. Have your child pretend to be the teaser, and pretend to be the child.
Have your child tell you where you are and have your child tease “you.” Make the remarks you think are appropriate, suggest many things that the child could say. Then, switch roles. This game has several advantages:
- It makes the child feel in control, rather than helpless (which is the feeling teasing often creates)
- It allows the child to laugh at teasing
- It gives the child some idea of what can be said or done to teasers
- It builds the child’s confidence
- It gives you a chance to evaluate the level and type of teasing your child experiences
- It opens communication with your child. Since the child feels free to tell you what is happening through “play acting” he or she may be willing to tell you what is happening in more detail, which can help you in deciding what to do about the teasing.
“Mommy, they tease me!”
What is the scariest thing for your child about bedwetting? Is it your anger or the additional work you and your child have to do in the morning? Well, your anger may be frightening for him as he thinks you will yell at him or say something that makes him feel bad, however, it is not the worst consequence your child is afraid of as being teased at school because of his bedwetting can be more hurtful than anything.
Although you and your child keep the accident as a secret, sometimes it just leaks or probably his schoolmates tease your child for something they are not sure about. Unfortunately, the tease is right that your little one wetted the bed last night.
When he is being teased by his friends, the first thing he possibly does is talking back to him; it is good of him anyway for it shows you that your beloved child can defend himself. But, remember every child is different, some can handle their problems yet some others just cannot do that. If your child belongs to the second type, you should never blame him.
You are the only shelter he has so whenever his friends tease him about his bedwetting, he will run to you. I think that this is not totally bad for you as the mother, at least you can play your role as his protector by helping him coping with the situation:
Be emotionally available
You know your child is stressful for being teased about bedwetting at school, this is the time to comfort him as the first step coping with the unpleasant situation. Make sure you are always emotionally available for your little one thus you can listen to his story and understand what he feels; this way, he will feel emotionally safe.
Additionally, when you are emotionally available for your child, he will have a more positive relationship with others which means later on, he is be able to socialize better including overcoming verbal bullying.
Teach him how to react
This is a good opportunity for you to teach him how to react when he shares his experience about being teased at school due to the bedwetting. Of course, the suggestion you give him should not contain physical attack like hitting or slapping because it can cause a more serious problem. Train them how to talk back or act like he does not care, for example through a role play.
You can firstly act as the victim and your child is the bad friend. Ask him to say the things his friend usually says to tease him while you have to verbally respond to his words, then switch role; here, you are showing him what to say when he is in the situation. Or if your child does not feel good to talk back, teach him how to act he does not care, in the way that he does not seem coward.
The role play is beneficial as now you can understand exactly how he feels and your child as well can build his confidence to overcome his own problem. Try it at home.